SAS in daring raid to rescue specialist troops surrounded by Taliban

SAS fighters rescued 20 of their own in an incredible night-time raid on the Taliban in Afghanistan, according to reports.

A score of specialist British Army soldiers were trapped and surrounded by terrorist fighters hundreds of miles from safety in the Kandahar region, southern Afghanistan.

After they sent a rescue request to Blighty, their SAS comrades clicked into action to get them out, The Mail reported. This is how they pulled it off.

Kandahar's own airfield was unusable because the Taliban had overrun the airport.

The SAS landed a gigantic Hercules C-130J on the desert floor in pitch-black darkness.

But that was only after the elite SAS forces on the ground fought their way to a top-secret location where they could guarantee a safe landing.

Once the Hercules was down, the fighters leapt in and were shipped off home.

The sheer risk of landing such a vessel on the sand with no visibility or a runway made this one of the most ambitious SAS ploys in recent years.

Yet as with all the elite squad's most audacious missions, it went ahead without a squeak.

A defence source told the Mail it was a "textbook" SAS rescue plot.

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They said: "Kandahar had fallen to the Taliban on Friday and the guys were down there for five days after that.

"The enemy were rampant and killing a lot of Afghan Special Forces whom the SAS had been working with.

"So it was a very urgent mission.

"Credit to the Hercules crew from 47 Squadron for landing the aircraft at night on rough terrain and getting her airborne again with the guys and their equipment aboard.

"It was textbook."

The Hercules was spotted by eagle-eyed satellite viewers flying over the Mediterranean before it disappeared from radars as it approached the desert.

Then after the rescue it reappeared on viewers' maps as it approached a friendly airbase in Dubai.

The epic raid came as the defence secretary warned there were "hours not weeks" left to save the British soldiers and citizens still stranded in Afghanistan.

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Cabinet minister Ben Wallace tearfully admitted last week that not all Brits and Afghan allies will "make it home".

It's clear that if the SAS were present on every rescue mission to salvage our trapped boys abroad, there'd be no doubt they'd make it home.

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